CROSS Safety Report
Precast concrete panel fixing
Key Learning Outcomes
For civil and structural design engineers:
Be aware that connections can often be the weak link in structures and attention to detail is required
Fixings may require a combination of regular visual inspections with full inspections at appropriate intervals
They should be designed and detailed to ensure they can be safely accessed to allow these inspections to be carried out
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A 1960s flyover was being demolished and a feature came to light about panel fixings. Construction was of reinforced post-tensioned concrete and it had been deemed no longer safe for use. The edge panels to the main structure parapets were reinforced concrete precast panels. These were hooked over the top of the insitu parapets with a small lip and fixed with a single bolt to each panel.
The issue was that panels were substantial and had one fallen there would have been serious risk to persons or vehicles beneath. The bolts appeared to be stainless steel and were in good condition but reliance on a single fixing which cannot be inspected in any event is not good practice.
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